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The Da Business Code for the new year

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When little trials and tribulations such as rising interest rates come along to test us, I always think about the cliché: “When the going gets tough, the tough get going!”

Don’t you just love smarties!

While I believe this can be an inspiration to click us into another gear so we compete more aggressively, in fact, the better rev up might be: “When the going gets tough, the smarties work smarter!”

Let’s face it, most businesses, especially good ones, are characterised by hard-working bosses and employees. And this comes about by the leader setting a great example. But while you can knock the real goers of the business world, I think the difference between good and great businesses is linked to how smart the boss is.

If you want your business to rocket

That’s not to say you have to be a rocket scientist but there’s a misconception in the small business world that making it happen for your operation isn’t rocket science. I suggest the opposite is the case, when you want to build a great business.

Another chapter

Let me take you out of the world of small business for a moment and ask you to contemplate a best-selling book. Now this is not Switzer, the book critic, at his worst but without doubt, in terms of sales, Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code is a wonderful read for small business owners who want to own a best-seller operation.

A good template

I know we’re all time poor so I want to quickly add that The Da Vinci Code doesn’t have the secrets of better business encoded into its story. But for me, my reflections on what Dan Brown penned is a great role model for business owners.

On the grail trail

There’s another link between Brown and business owners and that’s the fact that both are searching for the ‘Holy Grail’. We all want to find the secret of success that applies to our businesses and Brown, in writing a mega best-seller — over 40 million copies sold — has also created a Da Vinci Code business!

The book has become a great advertising vehicle for “everything Dan Brown”, and hasn’t it built an unforgettable brand?

Here’s a lesson

I could be wrong but it seems to me Brown did not just write a book but created a plan to include all of the elements that would attract readers to his book, like bees to honey.

The lesson has to be that you have to put together a Da Vinci Code-like business plan and it goes double when interest rates and petrol prices head in the wrong direction.

Breaking the code

So how do you do it? How do you create your Da Business code?

It has to start with leadership linked to a business plan to succeed. The best plan in the hands of the unmotivated is doomed to fail.

When you’re hungry for it

I love the reflections of that wonderful tennis player Chris Evert. Looking back, she summed up her illustrious career in this oh so memorable way:

“There were times when deep down I wanted to win so badly I could actually will it to happen. I think most of my career was based on desire.”

Do you have the will to win?

Desire is critical to any success but I wonder how many people in business have this will to win. In just about all of the wonderful business people I’ve talked to and analysed over 20 years they’ve all been 24/7 focused individuals.

What customers want

Like Brown, smart business owners who want to create a great business recognise their weaknesses and rely on experts to build a story of substance.

Their endplay is to deliver to customers what customers want and that comes from a comprehensive analysis of what customers want.

It’s not about luck

Brown didn’t just get lucky. He conceived a wonderful plan based on readers who wanted to know the true story of three of the great icons of our history — Jesus Christ, Leonardo Da Vinci and the Holy Grail.

And what a marketing masterpiece it was — a novel posing as history ‘answering’ some of the big questions of human history. This is the stuff of entrepreneurs more than a novelist and the product was so addictive that its brand was built more by word-of-mouth than advertising. And then the media went along for the ride to increase the momentum.

The synopsis

So let’s recap. The key figure had a plan and searched for the key elements to create a product that customers wanted. He then delivered, and a highly appreciative market voluntarily built the brand and, I can bet you, some really smart public relations helped.

Work on your business, not in it. To learn how, book a complimentary business assessment today with a Switzer Business Coach.

Important information: This content has been prepared without taking account of the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular individual. It does not constitute formal advice. For this reason, any individual should, before acting, consider the appropriateness of the information, having regard to the individual’s objectives, financial situation and needs and, if necessary, seek appropriate professional advice.





Published on: Friday, December 18, 2009

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